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Planning your home office for optimal productivity

Mischa Fisher of Home-Advisor explains that millennials are creating home offices at a rate three or four times higher than baby boomers. He says that boomers are often in larger homes that might already have dedicated workspaces and are close to or have already entered retirement.

When folks are upgrading their current home offices, they tend to spend a larger percentage of the budget on improved infrastructure, explains Scott Newnam of Audio Advice in North Carolina. Such improvements include enhancing a home Wi-Fi network’s connection speed to accommodate telecommuting and distance learning. “If suddenly you have four people in the house all trying to connect to the same Wi-Fi signal, the quality of the network connection is more important,” Newnam says. Running a physical cable from a wireless access point to your modem and router will work much better than so-called mesh networks or Wi-Fi repeaters, which use a lot of bandwidth to connect to the original router.

Newnam also suggests upgrades to your home office sound system if videoconferences are part of your daily routine. “The fastest-selling products we have right now are what are called powered computer speakers,” Newnam says. They provide a higher quality sound than the cheap desktop speakers that were popular 10 to 20 years ago. A good quality pair of noise-canceling headphones can also help manage a houseful of distractions while working and schooling from home.

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